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Towards a unified music format

Ironically we have had one for years now called MP3…
After a small fit of google-stalking myself for fun I found a post from a cyberlaw class I took last year

Internet & Society ’05: Harvard Extension School

The first sales doctrine is essential if we are to keep a fair 
balance between artists and public access.[1]   What the music 
industry fails to recognize in the beauty of the P2P model is the 
“Great Agora” of the many to many conversation.[2]  In 
that conversation many users will become vehicles of 
advertisement for bands and movies alike. They put all the 
incentive into the hands of the software middlemen (Apple, 
Real, Microsoft, etc) and not their most powerful ally, the end 
user.  In the current model if the consumer sells a song 
she is in violation of copyright.  For her to do the right thing, 
suggest purchase from a retailer or online medium, 
she receives no incentive.   

Extending the first sales doctrine to their digital media 
purchase will endow value to the files and make consumers less 
likely to “give away” what they could rightfully sell.  
The end users will take more responsibilities to ensure that the 
copyright is not infringed upon because now they hold
 a stake in the proper sale as well.  Software middlemen (Apple, 
Real Media, Microsoft, et al) may use the Digital Millenium 
Copyright Act as a shield that prevents consumers from 
transferring their ownership of a song to another person.  
This move to empower reselling will directly affect their 
revenues and create a necessity for interoperability 
between their codecs (e.g. iTunes AAC, Rhapsody RM, Windows WMA)  

DIGITAL NETWORKS by R. Anthony Reese 
[2] From Consumers to Users: Shifting the 
Deeper Structures of Regulation Toward 
Sustainable Commons and User 
Access by Yochai Benkler*

I thought I saw some hope in France and their new DRM bill but they backed down. “state-sponsored piracy” (Apple’s term) is more aptly described as “state mandated interoperability” which I am firmly in support of at the moment. Even though I finally broke down and bought an iPod I will never use iTunes until my federally assured right to resell my legal purchase is restored.

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